Weather: -4 degrees
What I’m listening to: George Winston, December
Yes, you heard me right. Lasagna… Soup. When I came across this idea I immediately thought it was brilliant and wished I had come up with it myself. But alas, I did not. I love a good plate of lasagna but I hardly ever make it at home because it can be a lot of work from scratch – a lot of dirty pots, pans, and bowls – and a large batch can often be costly to make. This soup version is easier, lighter, and less expensive. Plus, it’s a big warm bowl of tomatoey, cheesy winter comfort. Now who can argue with that?
Adapted from A Farm Girl’s Dabbles
Yields: 6-8 Servings
- For the Soup:
- 2 tsp. olive oil
- 1lb Italian sausage (mild or sweet)
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1/2t crushed red pepper flakes
- 2T tomato paste
- 1 (28oz) diced tomatoes, Italian Style
- 2 bay leaves
- 6 c. chicken stock
- 8 oz. lasagna noodles, broken into pieces
- 3T finely chopped fresh basil leaves
- salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- For the Cheese:
- 8 oz. ricotta
- 1/2 c. grated Parmesan cheese
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- pinch of freshly ground pepper
- 1c shredded mozzarella cheese
Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Brown sausage. Add onions and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and red pepper flakes. Cook for 1 minute. Add tomato paste and stir well to incorporate. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes, or until the tomato paste turns a rusty brown color.
Add diced tomatoes, bay leaves, and chicken stock. Stir to combine. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Add uncooked pasta and cook until al dente, approximately 9-10 minutes or according to the package directions. Do not overcook noodles or let soup simmer for a long period of time at this point, as the pasta will get mushy.
While the pasta is cooking, prepare the cheese mixture. In a small bowl, combine the ricotta, parmesan, salt, and pepper.
Turn off heat. Stir in basil and season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
To serve, place a dollop of the cheese mixture in each soup bowl, sprinkle some of the mozzarella on top and ladle the hot soup over the cheese.
For more toasty soup recipes, visit the Soup category in the Recipe Index.